(NEW YORK) - It was built as an afterthought to the World Trade Center and it fell down as an afterthought, collapsing hours after the twin towers in a fire caused by fallout from the Sept. 11 attack.
But the site of the 47-story 7 World Trade Center will likely be the first to be redeveloped. How plans proceed will show how quickly lower Manhattan is redeveloped - and how well the city, state and private sector will work together.
Developer Larry Silverstein, who once promised to begin construction of a new office building as early as June, appears to have backed off in the face of community pressure that the plan complement an overall redevelopment scheme.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg also sounded a ``go-slow'' note. He said last week he would ``recommend stalling a little while longer. I think over the summer, you'll start to see people be able to sit down and look at a more comprehensive plan.''
Seven World Trade Center housed two electricity substations, former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani's Office of Emergency Management, and other government agencies and financial services companies.
A preliminary engineering study indicates that flaming debris from the twin towers fell on the building and ignited diesel fuel stored by the city's emergency office, causing a fire so hot it brought down the structure, The New York Times reported. No one died when the building collapsed at 5:25 p.m. Sept. 11 - more than eight hours after the twin towers were attacked.
While no one cheered its destruction, 7 World Trade had few fans.
``It wasn't one of New York's greatest buildings,'' said Robert Yaro, president of the Regional Plan Association, a nonprofit group that advises government on development. ``It was a product of its time.''
Building 7 was completed in 1987, well after the other trade center structures were built in the 1970s. Dwarfed by the two 110-story towers, it was not gleaming white like them but coppery brown.